NBK International Reserves Rose Slightly To $29.6 Billion In January

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NBK international reserves rose slightly to $29.6 billion in January (+0.2% mom, +10% yoy). The decline in the FX currency reserves at $328 million to $19.5 billion, was offset by the growth in assets in gold at $398 million to $10 billion, reports KazWorld.info with reference to the official website of Halyk Finance.

On February 9, the National Bank posted on its website the data on the international reserves, according to the data, the NBK international reserves rose slightly to $29.6 billion in January (+0.2% mom, +10% yoy). The decline in the FX currency reserves at $328 million to $19.5 billion, was offset by the growth in assets in gold at $398 million to $10 billion due to the increase in the price of precious metal (+6% mom) and, according to our calculations, nearly unchanged physical volume.

NBK intervention in the FX currency market on the net basis were equal to 0 in January.

There has been an acceleration of the growth of foreign currency assets of the National Fund in January (+1.8% mom), for 12 months the decline also slowed down and reached -2% yoy (-3.4% yoy in December). The increase in foreign currency assets was driven by the revenue growth of Oil Fund (direct taxes from the oil sector), which doubled as compared to the previous month and a substantial reduction in the use of funds (guaranteed transfer to the budget) from $0.7 billion in December 2016 to $0.2 billion in January this year.

There has been a significant strengthening of the national currency amid fixing of oil prices at $55 per barrel in January. Compared with the end of December, the exchange rate gained KZT5 or 2% against the US dollar. For the first ten days of February, tenge appreciated by another KZT5 to the dollar as the oil prices stood slightly over $55 per barrel.

NBK international reserves are virtually unchanged since November last year, while they had been on the consistent rise from February to October 2016. It should be noted, that the NBK quality assets went down somewhat, while the liabilities with the banks grew up from October 2016. The decrease of FX currency assets of the NBK in January, is probably associated with a reduction of contingent liabilities in relation to the observed outflow of deposits in December (foreign exchange deposits of legal entities decreased by 2.6%), banks have also withdrew some deposits in foreign currency with NBK. Bearing in mind that the amount of foreign exchange assets of NBK, is influenced by the situation in the banking sector, the recent difficulties of individual banks due to liquidity, obviously had some impact on the decrease of foreign exchange reserves.

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